Former President Donald Trump and Republican National Committee Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel reportedly applied pressure on Detroit election officials to abstain from certifying Michigan’s 2020 election outcomes, as revealed in a report.
During a conversation on November 17, 2020, Trump urged two Wayne County Board of Canvassers officials not to certify the election results, emphasizing the need to “fight for our country” and prevent others from seizing control. He deemed it undesirable for them to authorize the state’s election outcomes, particularly after their prior opposition to certification. Following the conversation, both Republican members of the canvassers board ultimately certified the vote.
McDaniel, also present during the call, hinted at legal support, presumably from the RNC, for Palmer and Hartmann if they declined to sign the certification document.
“If you can go home tonight, do not sign it… We will get you attorneys,” McDaniel reportedly assured them, with Trump affirming, “We’ll take care of that.”
Despite their initial refusal to sign the official vote statement and an unsuccessful attempt to retract their certification support the following day, Palmer and Hartmann did not proceed with signing for Wayne County.
The call occurred just after a November 17, 2020, meeting of the Wayne County Board of Canvassers.
Trump raised allegations of fraud and irregularities, especially targeting Detroit, insinuating that the city had manipulated the results. McDaniel underscored the necessity for an audit, highlighting Biden’s slender victory margin and the need for clarity regarding Detroit’s vote count.
McDaniel, alongside Michigan GOP Chairwoman Laura Cox, formally requested an audit in a letter dated November 21, 2020, directed to the Board of State Canvassers.
Addressing her previous statements, McDaniel clarified that her contention, as conveyed in the November 21, 2020, letter, was based on the substantial evidence warranting an audit.
Hartmann and Palmer affirmed receiving the call from Trump and McDaniel while seated in a stationary car outside the Wayne County elections building.
Trump later took to Twitter, reiterating claims of irregularities and the refusal to sign by the “harassed patriot Canvassers,” citing discrepancies in poll numbers and votes exceeding the actual count.